Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that Lyme disease would knock me to my knees.
I am seasoned healer and I have already healed several serious illnesses including a breast lump and uterine fibroids.
So, when I was diagnosed with Lyme in October, 2015 I passed it off thinking, “No big deal, it is just another thing to heal.”
I once joked, “It’s good that aging doesn’t happen overnight.” Unfortunately, for me it had. Every day when I woke up in the morning, I felt like I was hit by a Mack truck.
There are no ‘good’ diseases. With that said, Lyme disease may be the most complicated and the most devilish of all. Its array of symptoms affected every system in my body. In this blog series I will share the gory details of my experience – diagnosis, symptoms, treatment, and more.
I live on picture perfect rural farm less than an hour north of Bowling Green. My land is host to a herd of about thirty deer, a rafter of approximately sixty turkeys, and my herd of Texas Longhorns, a black lab and three cats.
The first forty-nine years of my life I lived in upstate New York, spending lots of time outdoors, farming, hiking and gardening. Then in 2008 I moved to Texas and in 2014 I moved to Kentucky.
The first time I ever found a tick attached was June 4, 2015. I had been doing yard work and found it behind my left knee while showering. I went online and learned how to safely remove ticks and did. I also read that it may be important to save the tick as it could be tested. I tucked it inside a plastic bag with a note indicating where I was bit and the date. I then stuck it in freezer and forgot about it. The article I read eased my mind because it basically said that the tick would need to be attached for longer than a few hours to transmit Lyme. That’s one of the many untruths I’ve discovered about Lyme disease.
Shortly after that I started to notice sharp pains in the center of my left wrist, especially while practicing yoga. I passed it off as a sprain from carrying heavy groceries. The pain and inflammation increased so sharply that I saw an acupuncturist who referred me to a myofascial release practitioner. I hoped that she could help me with that and a pain on the medial side of my left knee. In a few sessions, maybe six or so, she was able to release fascia adhesions and I was able to move my muscles a bit better; but the pain in both my knee and wrist never quit.
I forgot about the first tick bite until I was bit again on August 17th when I walked out of the house to the car and back wearing sandals. Within a minute or two of coming inside, I felt a burning sensation and noticed the tiny tick between the second and third toes on my right foot. I removed it and applied Campho-Phenique hoping to stop the intense burning, itching and inflammation. Later that day, I stopped at my doctor’s office to let the nurse have a peek at the bite. She told me, not to worry, but if a bull’s eye rash appeared to give them a call.
Not long after that I noticed a rash on my chest and brought it up to my doctor on August 21st, but he dismissed it. It’s important to note that a bull’s eye rash is not always present with Lyme.
Between June to September, I was bit by a total of five minute ticks. I was concerned, but I didn’t think I would ever get Lyme.
On September 4th I presented my doctor with the five ticks. Just to be sure I asked my doctor for a Lyme test. He looked through the five baggies, read the accompanying notes and finally said, “Yes, these look like deer ticks. Let’s wait six weeks to test for Lyme. If we test you any earlier, the test may not come back accurate. Besides, in Kentucky, Lyme isn’t prevalent.”
I was shocked. I felt in my gut an urgency somehow knowing that time was of the essence. I knew that the quicker I got the results the better off I would be. I had only known this doctor for a year and had already pushed him on other things, so I didn’t want to risk pissing him off now. I had other issues, Hashimoto’s Thyroid disease and hormonal imbalances that I needed him to prescribe meds for.
Inside I was screaming, ‘Seriously, Doc, I was bit in June!! Why not test me right now? Why wait? What the hell!! It is September, that’s way more than just six weeks! I already have a rash and other symptoms that I’ve discussed with you, but okay fine!!! I’ll wait six more freaking weeks’. I left his office shaking my head.
As the days progressed, so did the symptoms. Tune in for the next installment of this Lyme Disease series.
To read the rest of this series click on the links below: